Time Traveler developed at local university

HOUGHTON — Researchers have found a way to make historical maps and archives more public and interactive and they’re ready to share with the public.

Wondering what once stood where your favorite building is now is a thing of the past. Researchers at Michigan Tech have developed a digital map–based product called the Keweenaw Time Traveler, which allows users to explore the history of the region from 1850–1950.

“We’re really excited now that we’re launching to see what people are going to find and what they’re going to get excited about. So, people will be able to explore the places that they know and choose buildings a places that they have memories about or information about,” said MTU Assistant Professor of History and Co–Director of the Keweenaw Time Traveler, Sarah Scarlett .

The interactive display allows for people to not only view maps from different cities and townships, but make connections between places and people. The developers need the public’s assistance in confirming building materials and classifications, as well as adding information computers cannot read from historic archives. There’s a feature that allows users to share their own experiences with places and connect their family’s history to places in the area.

Scarlett said, “we hope that people will then comment on the stories that are already there, share what they know, maybe that mystery that family’s have had about their properties for generations will get solved by talking to other people and other places.”

Right now, the Keweenaw Time Traveler is only available for use in Houghton County, but developers are hoping to expand to Keweenaw County, Eagle River, Eagle Harbor and Copper Harbor with the public’s help.

The public is invited to attend the launch party to test out and learn more about the Keweenaw Time Traveler on Thursday, June 15th at the Carnegie Museum in Houghton from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

More information can be found here